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The Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) is looking for a program coordinator

The Research Institute of Organic Agriculture FiBL is looking for a local

 Project Coordinator (100 %)

to support the Seeding the Green Future (SGF) program for participatory organic cotton breeding in India. This role requires working closely with program partners and stakeholders including government, private sector, NGOs and farmer organizations to achieve the sustainability of organic cotton seed systems. This is a demanding and exciting position at the heart of Indian organic cotton industry.


Small organic cotton farmers are facing an acute shortage of non-GM cotton seed (free of genetic engineering) due to the widespread adoption of genetically modified Bt-cotton hybrids. Without the secure supply of non-GM cotton seed, organic cotton production in India remains severely threatened. Supported by Stiftung Mercator Schweiz and Organic Cotton Accelerator (OCA), the Research Institute of Organic Agriculture (FiBL) is addressing this gap in the organic cotton value chain and building on previous experiences of non-GM organic cotton cultivar evaluation and participatory cotton breeding in India (www.greencotton.org). In close collaboration with organic cotton growers associations, State Agriculture Universities of India (SAUs), the Central Institute for Cotton Research (CICR) and several NGOs we are establishing and extending a decentralized cotton breeding initiative, which remain GMO-free and meet the needs of organic and low-input farmers, as well as the fiber quality requirements of the textile industry. In an innovative transdisciplinary approach, smallholders, breeders, researchers, advisors, representatives of spinning and textile industry have been actively involved from the very beginning. Overall objective of the project is to secure the seed supply chain for organic cotton farmers, develop a portfolio of new cotton cultivars with improved performance, strengthen the collaboration among the actors and thus improve the integrity of the organic cotton value chain. This will also strengthen the income security of smallholder organic cotton farmers.

Job description

The Local Project Coordinator will assist the program leader in regular communication and coordination among the partners and will be responsible for keeping track of project progress with respect to milestones, visiting the field experiments in different agro-ecological zones in India and project data management & validation and project reporting. S/he will also play a critical role in supporting the project partners on the implementation of field experiments (on-station and on-farm). S/he will act as an intermediary between the project leader and the local partners and respond in a timely fashion to member requests from India. S/he will report directly to the program leader.


  • Provide day-to-day support to local partners of SGF program to ensure that program milestones and deliverables are met in timely manner
  • Regular monitoring of activities of each partner with respect to SGF program and GMO testing including validation of individual field data
  • Regular reporting to project leader
  • Translate and optimize training materials (manuals and videos) for the SFG program from English in multiple local languages.
  • Supervise partners in participatory research and develop farmer breeder curriculum
  • Ensuring SGF program related documentation is accurate and kept up to date
  • Organizing local meetings, fostering networking and close relationship with SGF partners.

Essential Skills & knowledge

  • University degree, or equivalent higher education qualification in plant breeding or agronomy
  • Demonstrated interest in sustainability and/or organic agriculture
  • Experience in cotton crop or value chain
  • IT literacy ( Word; PowerPoint; Excel; Outlook, Database, web-based applications,)
  • Excellent communication skills in English (oral and written) plus Hindi and if possible other local languages
  • Management skills and experience in project coordination with several partners
  • Experience in participatory research and willingness to work with farmers in remote areas
  • Basic understanding of data validation, statistical procedures, and data management
  • High level of responsibility and accurate and dedicated working style
  • Experience of working in culturally diverse and dispersed organizations

Working arrangements

The successful candidate will report to the Program leader.

The position is full-time and will preferably be based in Indore or in Madhya Pradesh, India. The country project manager will receive a  2 + 2 year contract, with a 6-month initial probation period. Frequent travel in India will be required.

Salary Scale: depends on skills and experience.


Interested applicants with the required attributes are asked to send, in English, a detailed CV and a brief motivation letter (2 pages maximum), latest qualification, reference letters, and contact details of referees to FiBL by e-mail at harun.cicek@fibl.org with the subject “PROJECT COORDINATOR_SGF_INDIA”.

Application deadline: 21 February 2018
Expected starting date: 1 April 2018

FiBL is an equal opportunities employer, and is committed to good practice and transparency in the management of natural, human and financial resources.

We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only holders of a valid work visa or eligible to work in India will be considered.